Friday, 25 January 2008

Vastly under valued art of playdough!!!

This morning, a friend of mine dropped her 3 year old daughter off at my house full of boys..... If you know anything about us at all, then you will know that they are what one could call 'proper' boys!! Go karts, pen knives, bows and arrows, rope swings to name but a few!

So this morning, I opted for making playdough and digging out the box with all the cutters and bits and pieces in. My eldest son took the opportunity to spend some time undisturbed in his room with a Land Rover magazine, and the other 3 all joined in at the table with the playdough. The age range was almost 2, 3 and a half, 7 and a half and 11. What other activity could you provide for such a wide age range where they could all play together, interacting and helping in such a way? They made mince pies, sausages, cakes, insects!!, dogs, sheep and they were all occupied for nearly 2 hours!!!

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Follow the spiders...

David (my 7 year old) is a real Harry Potter fan. I mean he is really in to it. He will listen to Stephen Fry's recordings of the first three books over and over again. He uses quotes from the books in his conversation, talks about it as though it is 'real' and can be heard practising spells and incantations in his room!! To the point where I was getting a little concerned that he was doing little else, except for the odd dog walk, playing on his bike and a bit of role playing with his lego. So you can imagine my delight when on Sunday he got down the box of Knex and asked me to help me make some of the models..a motorbike, go kart and tractor. Then he went off by himself with it, and came up with these!

For those of you familiar with 'The Chamber of Secrets' you will already have guessed that this was coming!! A selection of spiders. So much for the distraction from Harry Potter!!

And then yesterday, Jonathan (my 11 year old) had the chance to try out his off road board properly.

His physical ability is just awesome!

While ALL the boys were out in the woods enjoying themselves, i managed to speak to a contact from our local college about an opportunity that exists for 14 year olds. It seems that it may be possible to get Tom ( my 13 year old) on to a course in Motor Vehicle Engineering next September for one day a week plus 50 days of on hands experience at, get this, the Land Rover centre of development near to us. Tom's really in to Landys and we're just hoping that he will manage to get a place next year. What an opportunity!

Also on the exciting things for Tom front, we are hoping that he is going to go to Australia to stay with friends this opportunity not to be passed up I think. We're looking in to the costs etc at the moment but as long as our friends are happy with the arrangements then I think he'll be able to go. Suddenly it's all systems go!

Friday, 18 January 2008

January 18th already? How did that happen?

Well, the month is already halfway through and I haven't managed to post anything since November!! I did have a few more pictures from Nov/Dec that I wanted to post, so here they are.
The boys Go kart up on the ramp for some modifications. Wanna race?

William, not content to stroke one Guinea Pig, he has to attempt to fit them both on his little lap!!!
Yee Hah!
I just really love this autumnal photo I took at a National Trust property we visited. A freezing cold, but sunny day.

December is always a busy month for everyone but our family has 3 birthdays in December so I feel justified in changing 'busy' to manic. It never seems to be any different. I think I have it all in hand and then suddenly I realise how little time there actually is in a day.

The New Year sort of just sneaked in quietly when I wasn't looking and the thoughts of sitting down with the boys to do a recap of 2007 and a projection for 2008 just hasn't happened yet.

There are a few things that I'd like to share in this posting. The first being a family bike ride last weekend on the sunny day between all the horrendous rain. We cycled about 9 miles. It was a spur of the moment, make the most of the sunshine kind of outing. The first this year.

The second is that William who will be 2 in March decided on New Years Day that he would like to wee in the potty after all!!! He just walked in to the dining room carrying the potty containing a wee looking very pleased with himself, and hasn't looked back!! He is 100% as long as you don't put pants on him! Then it's reduced to about 50%. But still we're all very pleased with him. This followed a long period of time of wearing no nappy, and weeing wherever and whenever he felt like it!! He knew for a long time when he was going to do it and would even say wee but when offered the potty, he would pick it up and launch it across the room!! My other boys were between 18 and 20 months when they did it and I was beginning to think that his independant streak was getting in the way of him doing it ....EVER! But as everyone who knows anything about children know....they will do it when they are ready and not before!!

But what I didn't know was that it extended to chickens!!! Buffy, our beautiful Buff Orpington type hen who was born on May 13th 2007, laid her first egg on New Years Eve!!! Fantastic moment...we were all so thrilled and excited. Yes, I know, it's just an egg, but it's been such a long time coming!! We were expecting her to lay her first one sometime in October or even November but on the last day of the year?!!! We'd almost forgotten that we were waiting for her to perform!! The cockerel, on the other hand, has been 'performing' regularly. Usually right outside the french doors of the kitchen!! He is also a bit of a force to be reckoned with, and whoever lets them out in the morning has to run the gauntlet to get back to the house unscathed!!! Quite comical to watch, and as yet not caught on camera but watch this space!!